Dubai World Trade Centre to set up specialised crypto zone

FILE PHOTO: Representations of cryptocurrencies Bitcoin, Ethereum, DogeCoin, Ripple, Litecoin are placed on PC motherboard in this illustration taken
FILE PHOTO: Representations of cryptocurrencies Bitcoin, Ethereum, DogeCoin, Ripple, Litecoin are placed on PC motherboard in this illustration taken, June 29, 2021. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/File Photo

December 20, 2021

DUBAI (Reuters) – The Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC) will become a crypto zone and regulator for cryptocurrencies and other virtual assets, the Dubai Media Office said on Monday, part of efforts to attract new business as regional economic competition heats up.

The move by the DWTC to create a specialised zone for virtual assets – including digital assets, products, operators and exchanges – is part of a drive by Dubai, one of the United Arab Emirates federation of seven emirates, to create new economic sectors, the statement said.

“Rigorous standards for investor protection, anti money laundering, combating the financing of terrorism, compliance and cross border deal flow tracing,” will be developed, it said.

In September, the UAE Securities and Commodities Authority and the Dubai World Trade Centre Authority (DWTCA) agreed a framework that allows the DWTCA to approve and licence financial activities relating to crypto assets.

In October, another Dubai free zone DIFC, Dubai’s state-owned financial free zone and the Middle East’s major finance centre, released the first part of a regulatory framework for digital tokens.

(Reporting by Lina Najem; Writing by Lisa Barrington. Editing by Jane Merriman)